Science-based management the key to Alaska’s successful fisheries

One of Alaska‘s great success stories is the resurrection of our salmon fisheries after a virtual collapse that occurred under federal management in the years before statehood.

When Alaska became a state in 1959, the fledgling state government immediately instituted science-based fisheries management using sustained yield principles. Improved management helped, but coastal communities and the state economy lagged as the slow recovery process took place. When salmon runs had failed to recover by the early 1970s, the Legislature took two actions. First, it enacted a limited-entry program to control overfishing. Second, in partnership with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, it created the framework for the state hatchery program.

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